How dogs are helping a Hartlepool dad battling multiple sclerosis

Dogs can do their bit to help a Hartlepool dad who is battling an aggressive form of multiple sclerosis have pioneering treatment in Mexico.

Tuesday, 5th April 2016, 9:37 am
Updated Tuesday, 5th April 2016, 9:41 am
Dave Shaw with his dog Pedro

Hartlepool’s own ‘dog whisperer’ Dave Shaw is holding a fun dog show to add to Eric Thomson’s £35,000 fund.

Owners are invited to take their four-legged friends along to Summerhill country park on Saturday, April 30.

Dave will host a series of eight fun classes with categories such as best groomed, best trick and funniest dog.

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He said: “I have been asked by the chemo unit at Hartlepool hospital where Eric’s wife works as a nurse to do something a bit different to raise some funds so decided on a big fun dog afternoon for all dog lovers.

“Eric is trying to raise around £30,000 so he can go to Mexico for stem cell transplant treatment for his severe MS condition.

“He cannot get his treatment on the NHS in the UK so his condition will not improve and in fact will get worse.

“There is no hope for him without the treatment.”

Former Camerons brewery worker Eric, 49, is due to fly out for treatment on June 20.

If the operation is successful it could see him return to work.

His family have raised almost £25,000 in donations through the website Go Fund Me and a number of events are lined up.

Mecca Bingo in Hartlepool recently made a generous donation of £1,000 to the fund.

And a ladies night by Chrissy Richardson made an amazing £3,100.

Eric was perfectly fit and healthy until four years ago working full time and playing football in his spare time.

Devastatingly, at the age of 45, he was diagnosed with Primary Progressive Multiple Sclerosis.

But he has been accepted for Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation (HSCT) which has been proven to eradicate the debilitating symptoms.

The dog show takes place from 1pm-4pm on April 30. A minimum donation of £5 is required but includes entry into all eight classes.